I know that I sound like a clichéd film critic when I say that I love Martin Scorsese, but this man has consistently made films that have left me breathless and in awe of his talent. Only Gangs of New York has left a bitter taste in my mouth, but save from that hiccup, this man’s filmography is a miracle.
The Wolf of Wall Street does nothing but solidify Scorsese’s claim to be one of the finest, most on-the-nose directors to ever live. Anyway I spread the mustard, Wolf is a film that the post-2008 western world needed to see. You can argue that it is too over-the-top, that it glorifies greed and the trappings of being young, rich and working at Wall Street – but it all rings true. I never once thought ‘oh that could never happen’ while watching Wolf of Wall Street.
Jordan Belfort and Co are the exact people who would play darts with dwarfs or have a threesome with a secretary or have sex in a see-through lift. This is the type of morals the guardians of our universe had – and some argue still have.
So the problem with the film isn’t entirely of Scorsese’s making – the film feels soulless and hallow because the people depicted in the film are soulless and hallow people. Don’t get me wrong, it was a wonderful watch but after the film finished, I just shrugged my shoulders and moved on. As charismatic as Leonardo DiCaprio’s Belfort is, there is nothing at all new about him – at all. We’re just seeing a younger, more extravagant Gordon Gekko.
The only thing anyone in this film cares about is money – and when it looks like Belfort has changed his spots, his stunning wife (played by the jaw dropping Margot Robbie) leaves him because he has no money. Money, not emotions, is key and king here.
The film is a terrible indictment on the western world and I still think it applies post-2008. I’m going to file this under the ‘dope Scorsese films’ but I have no idea whether I will ever watch it again.